Laptops like most consumer electronic goods are hard and sensitive to shock and even the most expensive ones which use some of the best technology can offer in terms of shock protection. Then comes the ability to produce electronics circuits onto flexible substrates that would allow them to bend and twist without damaging the circuitry and other electronics parts which could herald the age of the less sensitive electronic products. These products are already in use but the future holds more surprises such as the flexible laptop that won’t cease to function after you kinda’ sat on when you were on the bus.
These flexible gadgets and gizmos (OLED’s for example are just some of the exciting new fields of applications for these flexible electronics) would be better for you can’t fathom the amount of abuse we subject current gadgets nowadays. The cellphone that prevented your car door from closing, the iPod that fell out of your pocket while you were skateboarding and many other crazy stuff that would all fall as “out of the terms and conditions of reasonable use” that not only invalidates the warranty but utterly removes all hopes of future repair. Having flexible electronics would allow these gadgets to withstand the twisting and wrestling they undergo in out pockets as we scramble to stuff them full with all the other must have gadgets every time you step out of that door into the world.
As manufacturers try to find more innovative ways of using their products to get more sales, news that movies may be coming to you contained in a thumb flash drive was just waiting to get out and make itself a reality. Music has been released onto the flash drive market for quite sometime which began with one record label. With flash drives coming in all shapes and sizes (and in the most bizarre forms) and with them equaling or even surpassing the storage capacity of most DVD’s, no wonder they have become the next platform onto which movies may be sold for your viewing pleasure anywhere there might be a video screen and USB port where you can plug in your drive into.
The technology is there, the only thing it needs is support from the movie industry as the next step for movie sales that may take over video CD’s and DVD rentals. There is not much information on the proposed DRM protection that may be needed for such portable removable media but it would beat the problems associated with fragile DVD’s that you’ve accidentally left in the dash of your car that has become part of it utterly useless and leaving you with nothing but the fine for the damaged disk. Flash drives have become so cheap they can cost next to nothing compared to the rental fee which can include a small deposit for the drive itself should you happen to lose it (which is most likely to happen due to the smaller size).
The company, PortoMedia, proposes to put up several hundred kiosks or movie booths where people can purchase the movies they like with a flash drive they bring with them much like the way you get your soda on the subway while you wait for the train to come. Imagine a small automated booth with a vending system where you plug in your flash drive, select your movies, download them onto the disk and then pay with your debit card as you shop for say the groceries or some other task. The time it takes to copy files from a hard drive onto a flash disk is fast but it still takes quite sometime to copy 4 gigabytes or more of data (the average capacity of your standard DVD) so that might be a point to improve on but it still beats having to get your disks, fall in line to pay and then have to remember that title you were looking for in the first place sending you again to the back of the queue.
Source : Cnet.com